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Texas House passes pro-life House Bill 2, Senate committee likely will consider bill this week

by | Jul 10, 2013

By Dave Andrusko

Texas State Rep Cindy Burkett (left),  John Seago of Texas Right to Life, and Texas state Rep. Jodie Laubenberg, author of  HB2

Texas State Rep Cindy Burkett (left), John Seago of Texas Right to Life, and Texas state Rep. Jodie Laubenberg, author of HB2

Within the last hour, the Texas House approved House Bill 2, an important pro-life bill that has garnered national headlines, on a third reading, by a 96-49 vote.

The Senate Health and Human Services has scheduled a hearing for Thursday on the House measure, according to press accounts. A vote by the full Senate is possible Friday, but more likely next week.

As NRL News Today has reported, the bill has a number of important components intended to protect unborn children capable of feeling pain–20 weeks fetal age, according to the best medical evidence–and their mothers.

For example, HB2 requires that abortions be performed at an ambulatory surgical center and that the abortionist have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles, in case there are complications. And there are complications, including deaths, from abortions.

In addition the abortionist would be required to administer chemical abortifacients in person, rather than via videoconferencing where he is never in the same room with the mother.

Given the unruly behavior of abortion supporters that thwarted passage of the bill in the First Special Session, it was not surprising that the more than ten hours of debate yesterday was intense and spirited. Dozens of pro-abortion amendments were defeated largely along party lines.

“What we’re talking about today truly is about the health and safety of a woman who would undergo an abortion, but also, I want to point out, we are talking about an unborn child,” said state Rep. Jodie Laubenberg, author of HB2.

State Representative Jason Villalba, “whose wife is expecting a baby boy, spoke passionately in favor of the bill while showing his colleagues a sonogram picture of ‘my son,’” the Associated Press reported. “We fight this fight because of innocent human life,” he said.

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With a pro-life majority in the state Senate, prospects for passage are good. The general consensus is that the pro-abortion amendments yesterday were attempts to position opponents for the inevitable court challenge.

“Pro-lifers everywhere and Texas’ unborn children owe a deep debt of gratitude to Texas Right to Life and Pro-Life Gov. Rick Perry for their persistence and hard work in securing passage of this comprehensive pro-life bill,” said David N. O’Steen, Ph.D., NRLC Executive Director.

Categories: Legislation